Pasadena officials say reinstatement of the indoor mask rule, which includes indoor dining except when eating or drinking, comes amid a "significant increase in case rates" over the last three weeks. City officials add that they've seen a 240% increase in COVID-19 cases since July 1.
Although 80% of the Pasadena population is vaccinated, officials say the city is a destination location with the convention center as well as the many shopping and dining options in Old Pasadena.
The mask mandate is expected to take effect on Wednesday.
[1/3] Due to significant increase in case rates over the past 3 weeks, Pasadena Public Health Dept. Director and Health Officer Dr. Ying-Ying Goh will issue a Health Officer Order requiring face masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status, in public settings and businesses.— City of Pasadena (@PasadenaGov) July 20, 2021
Meanwhile, Pasadena spokesperson Lisa Derderian said city employees will also be mandated to get vaccinated. Officials say the city manager is working with human resources to get the policy in place as soon as the vaccine receives FDA approval.
The move would make Pasadena the first city in Southern California to require all city workers be vaccinated.
Pasadena, which has its own health department separate from L.A. County, was previously only recommending indoor masking.
L.A. County's new face-covering mandate went into effect over the weekend and requires everyone to wear masks in indoor public spaces regardless of their vaccination status.
Health officials have attributed the recent spike to the presence of the more infectious Delta variant and the intermingling of unmasked individuals where vaccination status is unknown.
City News Service contributed to this report.